Stroganof-the easy version

As much as this will be a disappoint my vegetarian friends: I love beef stroganoff. It is one of my favorite high calorie treats. It has all my favorites things in it-mushrooms, sour cream, noodles, onions, and of course beef.

This particular recipe is not a traditional one-in that it is a much more American version. So, even though I don't call it "beef stroganoff" I do still title it "Russian Beef Stew" since it is close enough to the original recipe to be worth the name.

There are 2 ways you can make this stew. Either use a pound of leftover roast-or grilled-beef, or pick up a pound of stew meat from your local butcher. If you use fresh stew meat: Please brown it and then, leavign the fat behind procede with the recipe below.

I like to use leftover beef for this. It is a great way to stretch a little bit of beef out between 4 or five people without anyone feeling unsatisfied at the end of dinner.

Russian Beef Stew
1 Lb. leftover beef cut into 1 inch cubes
1 Lb. Mushrooms-Bella, crimini, buttons, or a mix thereof-quartered
1 large onion cut in half and sliced thin
3 cloves of garlic crushed and minced
2 Tbs. salted butter
2 Tbs. all purpose flour
1/4 cup tomato paste
3 Qts. beef stock
1/2 tsp. cracked black pepper (Extra on side for garnish)
1 cup red wine
1 Tbs. Worcestershire sauce
1 cup sour cream
1 Tbs. Brown sugar

1 Lb. Egg noodles-cooked

In a large wide pot: Melt the butter over medium/high heat. Add the onions and saute for 5-7 minutes just until they start to brown. Add the mushrooms and garlic and cook for another 5-10 minutes allowing the mushrooms to release all their juices and brown a bit. Add the beef and the flour and vigorously stir with a big wooden spoon. Add the next 5 ingredients and stir to combine. Turn the heat down to medium and allow to simmer for about an hour, until most of the liquid is gone and the stew looks opaque and shiny on top.

Add the sour cream and the brown sugar.

Stir together and bring back to a simmer for 3-5 minutes. Pour over egg noodles. Garnish with a little black pepper and serve.

**Chef's note-my daughter and husband like carrots in this dish. I do not. So I cook a few with the egg noodles. Baby carrots cook perfectly to al dente at the same rate as the noodles so I just pour them into salted boiling water together!

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